Ferrari's aim when setting up the off-season testing session (as in-season testing is prohibited by the FIA throughout 2009) is to give young talented Italian drivers the chance to debut in highly-competitive international series like the newly-formed Formula 2 or the GP2 Series.
Italian driver Mirko Bortolotti is proof enough, as the 2008 Italian Formula 3 champion performed wonderfully during last year's testing session with Ferrari and received a full Red Bull backing for this year's Formula 2 championship. While driving the Ferrari F2008 at Fiorano last year, Bortolotti set the best time of 59.111, quicker than any driver lapping in an F2008 ever before.
“We are proud to continue our collaboration (with the Italian F3 Championship). The development of motorsport for youngsters is a theme that is particularly close to our hearts and we believe this day of testing is a further boost to generating interest in a championship that continues to grow,” confirmed Stefano Domenicali.
Last year's “graduates” were, apart from Bortolotti, Edoardo Piscopo (currently contesting in North American series Champ Car Atlantic) and Salvatore Cicatelli.